Thinking about a few weeks back when the sun was still shining, and you could go out without a coat ..
On one of these gorgeous Indian Summer days, I made my way up to the highest point in the city of Paris, Montmartre – the 18th arrondissement of Paris.
One of the most-visited monuments in Paris is the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, le Basilique du Sacré Cœur. I actually haven’t made it all the way up to the top yet – I’m saving that for the next sunny day !
After traipsing around the old, narrow streets of Montmartre, we sat down for an afternoon pick-me-up. Just as I sat down, I remembered that I hadn’t checked my email all day long – I was having too much fun living in the moment ! While usually nothing bad can come of that, this time it bit me in the back ..
As it was Paris Fashion Week, I had taken a leap of courage and sent emails to all the Public Relations directors of all the brands having shows that week, politely asking if I could have an invitation to their fashion shows, défilés. Any and all – big names and small ones. I figured, what’s the worst that can happen ? All the shows are private, by invitation-only, and you can’t even know the location unless you get an invite, or have ears in all the right places. I had gotten a response already, albeit negative, and I had more or less resigned myself to missing the most exciting part of autumn in Paris.
So imagine my surprise when I checked my email .. and I had been invited !!! There was my name, on a digital invitation, to the show for Andrew Gn, a new up and coming designer.
The show had started 20 minutes before I even opened the email. What was I going to do .. frantically run and see if I could sneak in, or just let it go, knowing that it would be over by the time I got there ? The shows don’t last that long, and it was at least 30 minutes away by metro. But I knew if I didn’t at least try, I would regret it forever. My friends urged me on, telling me that if I leave now I could at least see the finale !
So I scampered away, bustling through the crowds in the metro .. all the way to the Palais de Tokyo, one of the many art museums in Paris. I knew I was in the right spot. Photographers dressed in black with their huge lenses, crowded around the entrance-way, young bloggers and fashion-forward girls taking pictures of each other with the Eiffel Tower in the background, established fashion personalities coolly and nonchalantly talking in small groups .. all looking very poised and elegant, with a dash of boldness.
I knew right away that the show was over, and had been for a long time, but I needed confirmation. I went up to a woman standing to the side, who indeed confirmed that it had finished a little bit ago. I asked how it was, and she said she didn’t really know because she was working it as a photographer, but she thought it was a success. I’m sure it was! Anyone who is interested can see the collection here. So, I sort of slinked away, disappointed mostly in myself for not having seen the email sooner, but not completely devastated.
Looking back, it’s a funny story. And it’s a good memory for my “first Paris Fashion Week.” And I have hope, too. If I – just a student, practically nobody in the fashion world – can get an invite to a show just by asking, then imagine where I’ll be in 5 or 10 years when I’ll be one of the established nonchalants ! It’s a dream, but I won’t let anything tear it down.
Happy Sunday folks,